Frenkie de Jong ruled out of Euro 2024 for the Netherland

Netherlands international Frenkie de Jong has been ruled out of this summer’s European Championship in Germany through injury.

The Barcelona midfielder has suffered from recurring ankle injuries in recent months and has featured just three times for Barcelona since sustaining the injury on March 3.

The 27-year-old was substituted off in the first half of Barcelona’s match at Athletic Bilbao in early March and was taken off before half-time on his La Liga return against Real Madrid on April 21.

De Jong, who played both legs of Barcelona’s Champions League quarter-final against Paris Saint-Germain prior to the match in Madrid, was included in his nation’s Euro 2024 squad despite not playing for club or country since.

The former Ajax midfielder is widely regarded as a key player for the Netherlands, for whom he has scored twice in 54 international caps.

De Jong is forced off for Barca against Real Madrid.

The Netherlands get their Euro 2024 campaign underway against Poland on June 16 before facing France five days later and concluding their group stage against Austria on June 25.

De Jong’s absence is a huge blow to Ronald Koeman — the Barcelona pivot was the only of his midfield trio who has extensive experience of international football.

In his place, the Netherlands will rely on two key members of the PSV Eindhoven side who sauntered to this season’s Eredivisie title. Jerdy Schouten and Joey Veerman are the likely pairing for the Netherlands’ first group stage game against Poland on Sunday.

Schouten was always expected to partner De Jong, but Veerman’s promotion does at least come at a moment of career-best form, with the 25-year-old impressing during the Netherlands’ 4-0 warm-up win over Iceland on Monday evening, creating Xavi Simons’ opener beautifully.

Other options to play the double-pivot role in Koeman’s 4-3-3 include Atalanta’s Teun Koopmeiners and ex-Liverpool midfielder Gini Wijnaldum.

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